Kent State announces first vice president of enrollment management

Mary Parker

Mary Parker

Rachel Hale

President Beverly Warren announced Mary Parker as the new vice president of enrollment managment Monday.

Parker’s current role is associate vice president of enrollment management at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. She has previous experience in admissions and enrollment management.

President Beverly Warren announced the selection through a university-wide email.

“Dr. Parker will report directly to the university president and will lead our institutional efforts to strengthen student recruitment and success at all levels across our entire eight-campus system,” Warren said in the email.

Parker will start her position Jan. 16.

The newly created position caused a stir among faculty. In an email to Faculty Senate members in August, Chair Pamela Grimm expressed concern about why the position was necessary and if the administration was becoming too bloated.

Faculty Senate Monday evening, Grimm said she believed the position was needed, but she hoped it would be funded from within and it would be a transparent process.

“I think she’s an excellent hire and I think she has  a lot to bring to the table,” Grimm said. 

During Parker’s candidate presentation in October she said if she was offered the job, she wants to focus on students who will struggle academically and financially to help them be successful students, collaborate with regional campuses and focus on what student need and want in their academic experience, as well as the retention of transfer and online students. 

Public perception of higher education, demographic changes, access and affordability and completion rates are all major trends, opportunities and challenges Parker said she sees in enrollment management.

She said looking at the gap between disadvantaged and advantaged students is important because it shows if students will be successful.

“I understand what is happening in your departments and in your colleges is critical to what we do,” Parker said. “We have to put it to individuals in a meaningful way so that they can do their jobs and ultimately help students be successful. That’s why we’re here. That’s what we do. And that’s why I’m excited about this position.”

Rachel Hale is the administration reporter. Contact her at [email protected].